Friday, February 8, 2013

We will be known forever by the tracks we leave

Since we are going through an unexpected snow storm in good ol' Canada (aka stuck at home, can't go anywhere at the moment), I thought to share some of the amazing pictures we captured in Guamá, Cuba. I spend about 10 days in Cuba during my Christmas break including few days in January 2013. Just looking at the images of a warm climate, wild animals and beautiful architectural buildings makes me less gloomy about the freezing weather outside of my window.

For inquiring mind, Guamá is a municipality in the Santiago de Cuba Province of Cuba. It is located in the south-west of the province, and contains most of the Caribbean Sea coast west of Santiago de Cuba. After it was invaded by the Spanish empire, most of the Indian tribes (Ciboneys and Taíno Arawaks) that inhabit the island were treated brutally by the Spaniard, where the slightest infraction of Spanish rule, or refusal to accept Catholicism, resulted in mass torture and executions. Tainos who never experienced any hard labor were forced to work in gold mines or sugar cane plantations until they died of exhaustion. They were initially replaced by Native American slaves from the Southeast, but eventually, most slaves were either Africans or persons of mixed African-Native American heritage.

 holding baby crocodile, their skin is so amazingly soft.


Now this is one crocodile I will not be petting or getting near it.

When the Cuban revolution came to power in Cuba, it adopted Soviet practices of erasing ethnic identity. Castro and others wanted to minimize the racial stigmas and discrimination towards blacks and brown skinned Cubans that developed during the island’s three centuries of African slavery. Over the decades since then, however, the island’s leadership has finally realized that Cuba is not Russia. Cuba’s Native American heritage is very much a part of being “Cuban.” Since this realization, the government of Cuba has restored several Taino villages as a “living history” museums and tourist attractions. These projects include the above picture on the island of Guama It all represents a glimpse into the wiped out Indian tribes that inhabited the Island, including their way of life.


 I think I interrupted a private moment here.
 Some of the domesticated animals at the farm we visited.


 The whole Island is surrounded by beautiful wetland
 
 Beautiful Huts by the water, where tourists can rent

more crocodiles, I'm a bit obsessed with them
 Crocodile are deadly predators because they are silent observers and can actually run faster than most humans
 You will find these crocodiles everywhere, albeit closely observed and locked away from people
 As you may have noticed the shape of these statue' head, apparently the Indian tribes will bind the head of their infants to create the Alien-like shape. However, these tall statues are not an accurate depiction of how the Taino and Carib looked liked. Based on archeological findings, they were short and stocky people.
 crocodile meat, I did not eat it, but did drink the Coconut juice
 we took a boat ride across the Island, it was an amazing experience.
Aunt dome....fascinating in a creepy way
ps. the title of the post comes from Dakota Sioux proverb.
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